I’ve tried Google Reader several times in the last year. I kept hearing other librarians falling head over heals in love with it and wondering what I’d missed. But each time there was something that fundamentally disrupted my feed reading flow. I couldn’t have labels I wanted (it didn’t like having multiple labels having the same beginning word for a while there), I couldn’t rearrange the order of the feeds and simply could not function with that draconian an adherence to alphabetical order… lots of little things.
But over the past few days, Bloglines hung up on me one too many times and I thought I’d test out Google Reader again. After all, with the world of perpetual beta you never know if the problems that irked you 2 months ago will have been solved. And lo and behold! They had been. I imported my feed collection with no problems, rearranged my feeds to my heart’s content, and began reading away.
The only thing I don’t like is that it forces me to see what other friends in my gmail address book are reading. It’s not that I don’t like these people or their feeds. It’s that I don’t have the time, and I don’t have the will power NOT to click on a link that’s bold with new items. That new-item bold is hardwired into me as something that needs to be cleaned up NOW.
But I think I’ll stick it out this time. Hopefully in the next few months they’ll add a preference that kills this particular version of water torture.
Update: I cannot for the life of me figure out the “All Items” link in Google Reader. It routinely has more items listed than the sum of all my new items below it. In fact, I just clicked on that link and read all the items in it… the screen is now blank of new items, and it STILL says I have 13 new items. I don’t! If I do, I can’t see them. Grumble.
Update 2: After a few days of watching the phantom “new items” number climb and climb for no known reason, they suddenly disappeared this morning in the middle of my blog reading. Yay! Now it works as I want it to work (except for the annoying Friends Shared Items thing… but I’ll deal).
Last Update, I promise: So it appears that I get to cycle through weirdness and normalcy. The phantom “new items” number grows and grows each day until one day it realizes that it’s lying and clears itself. It stays clear for a day or two, and then grows again. I’ve decided to find this amusing.